I have a Focusrite Scarlett 2i2 interface connected to my PC. It has XLR mic input and 1/4" headphones output, while my headset has regular double 1/8" jacks.

I was wondering if it's safe to just use 1/8" to XLR and 1/8" to 1/4" adapters to plug the headset. Will it produce proper audio? Could it potentially damage the headset or the interface?


3 Answers 3


I suggest you look into searching for a "XLR to Plug-in-Power" adapter. There are a few on the market, one example is the Rode VXLR+ but several different companies have them. In that adapter there is some (actually quite simple) electronics translating from 48V to the around 5V the mic experts. Both electret and dynamic headset mics can handle this voltage, but I would not bet on 48V.

DO NOT - use a simple adapter together with 48V from the interface. It is of course possibly to turn off phantom power, but, well, it is easy to switch it on by misstanke.


The 1/4" to 1/8" headphone adapter is fine, just be sure to be careful with the headphone volume control since typical headsets tend to be comparatively sensitive.

But the mic requires a special adapter for converting phantom power on XLR to plugin power TRS.

These days there are oodles of "instrument microphones" with some phantom-to-plugin-power adapter for use with XLR, and for use with wireless transmitters without XLR. Because there are wireless transmitters with 1/8" phone plugs, you'll also find adapters converting XLR phantom power to plugin power on 1/8" phone plugs.

A brand item would be "Røde VXLR+" (the plus sign is crucially important here!), a discounter house brand item would be "t.bone CC 100 EW". There are various other offers with a different degree of quality (some containing a balancing transformer) but keep in mind what you are dealing with here: integrated headset mics are usually cheap stuff intended for cheap inputs. A superior balancing adapter allowing to use a 30m balanced XLR cable run from a stagebox is going to be ridiculously overengineered for almost all applications and headsets.


Short answer: 100% safe and will provide excellent performance, subject to longer answer.

Longer answer: This is assuming your microphone is of the dynamic type, which doesn't require an external power source, unlike condenser and electret varieties with require 48V and <10V respectively. If your mic does require power, it is likely of the electret type, which the Scarlett 2i2 cannot support. Your headset specs and/or documentation may mention which type of microphone you have. The bottom line is that either your mic will work instantly (once you've turned the gain setting to the appropriate level), or not at all. In the latter case you're in murky territory as to its power requirements. At this juncture I would advise NOT attempting to apply 48V phantom power to the mic for obvious reasons, unless you're absolutely certain the mic requires that kind of power.

  • As a pretty hard and fast rule, headset microphones are electret microphones. The size factor would not allow for a reasonable dynamic capsule, and the 1/8" connectors for microphones carry plugin power (that would be incompatible with a dynamic capsule) and use higher gains and impedances than dynamic capsules, especially smaller ones, would be able to deliver.
    – user107063
    Jun 29, 2023 at 15:06

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